2014 World Cup dream for Norwich City striker Steve Morison
Norwich City striker Steve Morison has spoken of his 2014 World Cup dream – as Wales bid to reach the finals for the first time for more than half a century.
Chris Coleman's team begin their qualifying campaign with a home match against Belgium in September, and Morison believes their run of four wins from the last five games of the late Gary Speed's reign underlined the country's potential to reach the finals for the first time since 1958, when they were beaten by eventual winners Brazil in the quarter-finals.
The 28-year-old striker, who scored nine Premier League goals in his first season with the Canaries, has no doubt the Welsh can make an impact under their new boss.
He said: 'Our plan is to qualify for the World Cup. That is what Gary Speed put in place when he first came in. The aim was Brazil and he went a hell of a long way to putting us on the right path.
'We have put something in place and the nucleus of that is still here, apart from the person in charge.
'Hopefully Chris Coleman can carry it on and we keep going in the right direction.
'The way we have performed in the last year has been fantastic. If we can carry that on we will be a match for anybody.'
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Morison was speaking ahead of yesterday's friendly against Mexico in New York, in which he played 60 minutes before the Central Americans won 2-0.
Now there is only an August friendly against Bosnia-Herzegovina to go before the first qualifier at home to Belgium on September 7. Group A also includes Croatia, Serbia, Scotland and FYR Macedonia.
Morison believes ex-Canary Craig Bellamy's decision to carry on at international level is fired by a similar desire to play in a major international championship.
'Craig wants to get to the World Cup more than anybody,' said Morison, who played 69 minutes last night. 'Especially because Gary Speed was a good friend of his. He feels he still has something to prove and has a lot to offer. He is good around the other players and he wants to reach Brazil as much as the rest of the squad. I can't see him retiring from Wales any time soon. He is still a quality player. I have trained and played with him as well as against him in the Premier League. He's a great player and I'm glad he is here.'
Mexico won with two goals from Aldo De Nigris.
City midfielder Andrew Crofts withdrew from the Wales squad for 'personal reasons'.